Exploring Scripture – James 5:13-16 – Part 1

Exploring – Part I

I’m desiring to see God move in my life, my family’s life, and within our church.   Being the lead pastor of our church has given me a platform to share and teach,

 

but it is impossible for me to share everything on a Sunday morning so I’m going to expand my voice a bit through writing and creating content.  The purpose of all our church content is to inspire growth, grow in discipleship, experience something more from God, and shape the DNA of our church. I’m sure I could add more to this list. I want us to be a church that is offering help. Where real people are given a real direction to their lives on this side of heaven.  

James 5:13-16

Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praise. 14 Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the 

church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in 

the name of the Lord. 15 And the prayer of faith will save the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. 16 Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.

 

This is a loaded passage.  Wow! There is so much to think about when reading this.  Recently, as a result of preaching on prayer, I’ve been thinking quite a bit on the manifestation and presence of God within my life and the life of the church.  As part of that thought li

ne, the idea of confession has been coming to mind. I decided I’d type confession into my study software to simply see what came up. My initial thoughts were to do a doctrinal or theological study on confession and help create a framework for its place within the church environment.  James 5:13-16, was the first scripture offered to read and like I wrote before, WOW!

2 Initial Takeaways from Exploring James 5:13-17

  1. You are normal –  James uses the word “is” multiple times when writing this passage: Is anyone among you suffering, Is anyone cheerful, is anyone sick?  He’s not asking this as if he didn’t already know. He’s reminding them they are all normal. They experience sickness, they are suffering, they are cheerful, and all of that is part of the human condition.  They are all completely normal. It’s remarkable what the human being can adapt to. It’s easy to settle into life’s struggles and that eventually feels normal. The human struggle is normal.
  2.  Be Weird  – James is offering an option to be different.  That option is to be weird. To be counter-cultural.  The option is to not settle into life and allow yourself to adapt to the human condition.  It is practical advice to counter the effects of the human condition. He’s reminding his readers that their lives are normal and he’s asking them to be weird.  If you are suffering be weird and pray, don’t settle. If you are cheerful be different and worship the living God. If you are sick pray for healing, don’t fight it alone invite the elders to join you in the fight.  All of those responses to the human condition push a person into alignment with God and His Spirit activity. If we were to be transparent those responses aren’t second nature to us, but the more we are living in God’s Presence the more being weird will become the new normal.    

 


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